This study examined how 22 children with spina bifida and hydrocephalus (SBH) and 22 matched control children with the same vocabulary age (VA) performed on story retelling and story generation tasks. The children were asked to retell two stories of different lengths (Stein and Glenn's Melvin, the Skinny Mouse and The Tiger's Whisker) and generate two stories from different stimuli (wordless picture book and verbal story starter). Analyses were conducted in terms of global narrative organization (story structure), local connection of ideas (cohesion), and productivity (number of words and utterances). Two-way ANOVAs were conducted to analyze how the stories and story tasks (retell versus generation) influenced the two groups' narrative performance. When comparisons were made between the two groups' performances on the individual stories, the children with SBH generally produced shorter and less complex stories than their VA peers. Story-by-group interaction effects showed that the children with SBH produced fewer story grammar elements than their VA peers on the retell stories but not on the generated ones. When comparisons were made between the two groups' performances on the type of task (story retell versus generation), results showed that for story retelling, the children with SBH produced stories that contained fewer words and utterances than their VA peers, significantly fewer story grammar components, and more correct cohesive ties. For the story generation task, the children with SBH produced significantly fewer reactions and total story grammar components. Story-by-group interaction effects showed that the children with SBH produced fewer reactions and total different words than the VA group on the story retell task but not the generation task. The results suggest that children with SBH function differently from their vocabulary age peers in some dimensions of narrative production. When the children with SBH encountered the retelling tasks or the more structured generation story, they tended to produce stories that were shorter than those of their VA peers.
College and Department
David O. McKay School of Education; Communication Disorders
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
Halliday, Melissa Ann, "Narrative Skills in Children with Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus" (2007). All Theses and Dissertations. 960.
spina bifida, hydrocephalus, narrative skills, story generation, story retell, story grammar components, cohesion, productivity